Friday, November 7, 2008

Let the Memory Live Again

When we meet someone new, we often get the question: “What do you do for a living?” And when I answer that I work for the Brooklyn Cyclones, I always anticipate the inevitable follow-up: “Wow...That must be awesome...what's it like?” That’s when my eyes get a faraway look, as I debate what single moment I could share from the last two years that could possibly encapsulate the uniqueness that is Cyclones employment.

Here are a few of my most treasured memories (I suggest clicking on this link and then opening a new window so that the song can serve as a soundtrack to the following):

  • Pulling tarp. As with most minor league teams, this task requires all hands on deck, from the GM, Steve, to all the interns. I actually think pulling tarp is kind of fun, except when:
  1. We wait until it actually starts raining heavily, “just to make sure”
  2. We wade through deep mud puddles with the tarp and I wonder if I should get a tetanus shot, “just to make sure”
  3. It happens to be Superhero Night, and we happen to all be in costume when we feel the first raindrop
  • Speaking of Superhero Night, my costume is a female Robin costume that I had ordered in a medium size, and somehow arrived in a small. This is also the night that Steve asks me to check on a bachelor party up in one of the suites, where I find myself having to explain that my costume has to do with the current theme night at the ballpark, and is not especially for them.
  • 24 Hours of Baseball. Our front office plays 12 teams for 24 hours straight for charity. I am the least gifted player by far, and keep praying, as I stand in right field, “Please don’t let the ball come to me. Please don’t let the ball come to me.” As we’re playing the Little League team. The one with the six-year-olds, not the eight-year-olds. In my defense, it is the 23rd hour…and I suck at baseball.
  • We hold an annual holiday party for the local children in the community, and Aardvark Amusements generously lends us arcade games for the festivities. One year, one of the games is Dance Dance Revolution, where one is required to physically step on sensor pads in coordination to the music. Rebecca and I have to be reminded repeatedly to let the children have a turn. Ditto for Kevin and Dave at the “Pop-A-Crocodile” game.
  • An enormous bucket of Hershey’s chocolates arrives, addressed to Elizabeth and myself; the sender is anonymous but is presumably a fan. This is the best thing to ever happen to me…until the bucket, still half-full, disappears from the ticket office. Mysteriously, the security cameras reveal nothing. Or so claims a certain stadium operations manager.
  • Before a sold out game, a couple of German visitors are having trouble understanding our “standing room only” policy. I happen to speak German, so I explain the policy to them and a short conversation ensues. I turn around to find the entire ticket office staring at me. Due to this incident, and my complete ignorance of popular culture prior to the 1990’s, Dave refers to me from here on out as “Stalag 17" or "The Spy.”
  • One co-worker, who shall remain unnamed, checks the caller ID on his phone and exclaims to himself, in a grammatical oversight, “Who ‘dis is?!?” Who Dis Is becomes the official rallying cry of the Ticket Office and is uttered each time the phones ring for the next three months, or, approximately 82,567,184 times.
  • The workout. After work one day in the off season, Steve emerges from his office dressed to work out at the gym in our stadium.
Me: “Steve, you work out?”
Steve (gesturing at his body):“This doesn’t happen by itself, Joyce.”
He heads to the gym; I leave the stadium 10 minutes later to find an FDNY ambulance parked outside, and wonder if the two events are related.
Ahhh...Memories. New ones are born every day!

-- Joyce

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